We are excited to introduce ALKU’s next DREAM Leader, Recruiting Trainer, Nicholas Hegarty! Check out the answers Nicholas provided below!
What influenced you to launch the ERG, DREAM?
So much influenced this idea. However, I was mainly influenced by my parents. My Mum & Dad came from Ireland, and as the oldest in my household, I was a first-generation immigrant to this country. I always like to tell people that my oldest friends (the people I met in the first grade) remember when I had an Irish accent! I lived in Ireland for roughly five years of my life and really experienced first-hand what the “American Dream” was. My parents came from the humblest of beginnings and owned a convenience store/gas station in the remote county of Donegal, Ireland. In the mid/late 90s, Ireland underwent a period known as the ‘Celtic Tiger’, which saw thousands of people emigrate from the country to areas like the US, Australia, England, etc. My immediate family was involved in this and saw us move to Boston.
I’m so passionate about the topic of immigration and studied for four years at Stonehill College studying International Relations and wrote my thesis on the Celtic Tiger & Mass Emigration in Ireland. I hope to take the experiences I have endured as a first- generation immigrant to DREAM to relate but also help anyone who is going through/has been through a similar experience to myself!
How will DREAM support members of the ALKrew?
I want everyone who is a part of this group to know that we are all a collective group where everyone’s opinion and input are valued on the same level playing field. I want myself to be held accountable for things like VTO, organizing meetings, creating an interactive Slack channel, etc.
But I want to hear the opinions of our members much more than the opinions of us leaders. More than anything, we want this to be an open space where we can all share similar struggles, achievements, news, and more that relate to all of us!
What is a short-term goal for DREAM?
We have so many exciting things planned! But why not start with a celebration of our heritage for the month of June, which is National Immigrant Month!
What is a long-term goal for DREAM?
To have over 100 active members within the ERG!
What do you want people to be aware of outside the group?
That this is a group overly passionate about where they came from and what their heritage is.
This ERG serves as a multi-cultural safe space for individuals who are immigrants or have first-generation immigrant parents or guardians. In this group, all ethnicities, races, and nationalities are encouraged to raise awareness of the immigrant experience by sharing and learning about upbringings, struggles, and citizenship processes while providing support and resources.